Mercy student conference in Perth18/10/2018
From 22 – 26 September I had the opportunity to attend the AMSSA Student Conference in Perth. There were students from Mercy Schools all around Australia and Papua New Guinea.
We started the conference with a welcome to country, with two aboriginal locals. They taught us words from their language and encouraged us to #5words – to learn five words from the local language back at our homes; this way the languages will not die out. We then shared stories for our foundation stones that we had brought from our schools. The evening finished with keynote speaker Brett from the YouTube channel How Ridiculous, who shared his story of rising to fame, but also of how faith has also been present in his life.
On Sunday, we had two keynote speakers, then in the afternoon guest speakers. I had the opportunity to listen to a refugee from Iran. He shared his story of escaping then living on Nauru and the struggle he went through to get refugee status in Australia. My other speaker spoke of women’s empowerment and taught us to create a legacy that we were proud of, no matter how small, and that we can achieve many things.
Sunday night we went into Fremantle for a tour of the Fremantle Prison. One of the girls made the comment “How quickly you bond with people when thrown into a torchlight prison tour”. Having a large group of girls and telling stories then having jump scares resulted in many screams and holding on to everyone. Monday, was the day was spent in the Perth CBD with an Amazing Race of Mercy and the day concluded with dinner and a musical quiz night at Mercedes College (the oldest Mercy school in Australia). On Tuesday we had the ‘Heritage Market Place’, which was an opportunity to share things that our school does and get ideas of what other schools from around the country do.
The trip was an amazing experience, I made friends from all around the country. I engaged in many deep conversations that always left me asking questions. This opportunity taught me about what we can do in our power with people and that even after we leave school that there will be mercy within us.
Charlotte Brook CH11, Year 10